Wilson v. Wasser, No. 74407

CourtFlorida Supreme Court
Writing for the CourtPER CURIAM; EHRLICH
Parties15 Fla. L. Weekly S331 Max W. WILSON, M.D., et al., Petitioners, v. Doris WASSER, etc., Respondent.
Docket NumberNo. 74407
Decision Date07 June 1990

Page 339

562 So.2d 339
15 Fla. L. Weekly S331
Max W. WILSON, M.D., et al., Petitioners,
v.
Doris WASSER, etc., Respondent.
No. 74407.
Supreme Court of Florida.
June 7, 1990.

Steven Billing of Billing, Cochran, Heath, Lyles & Mauro, P.A., and Nancy Little Hoffmann of Nancy Little Hoffmann, P.A., Fort Lauderdale, for petitioners Max W. Wilson, M.D., and Wilson, Meigs, Mastriole & Sutherland, M.D.s, P.A.

Melanie G. May of Bunnell and Woulfe, P.A., Fort Lauderdale, for petitioner Fla. Patient's Comp. Fund.

James C. Blecke, and Steven K. Deutsch, of Deutsch & Blumberg, P.A., Miami, for respondent.

PER CURIAM.

We have for review Florida Patient's Compensation Fund v. Wasser, 545 So.2d 924 (Fla. 4th DCA 1989). Having accepted review of Florida Patient's Compensation

Page 340

Fund v. Sitomer, 524 So.2d 671 (Fla. 4th DCA 1988), quashed sub nom. Smith v. Sitomer, 550 So.2d 461 (Fla.1989), which conflicted with other district court decisions, we accepted review of this case also. 1 The question presented here, as in Sitomer, is whether the Florida Patient's Compensation Fund (the Fund) or the medical doctor's (Wilson's) primary carrier is responsible for attorney's fees under section 768.56, Florida Statutes (1981).

The trial court imposed costs and attorney's fees against the defendant doctor and the Fund, holding the Fund responsible for that portion of the judgment exceeding $100,000, Wilson's underlying coverage. The district court reversed the Fund's liability for attorney's fees and held Wilson's insurer liable for them.

The Fund argues that Wilson's insurer, rather than the Fund, is liable for attorney's fees because Wilson's insurance policy provided for the payment of "costs." We rejected this argument in Smith v. Sitomer, 550 So.2d 461 (Fla.1989).

The Fund alternatively argues that it cannot be liable for attorney's fees because the verdict totaled less than $100,000. We disagree and quash that part of the district court opinion imposing liability for attorney's fees on Wilson's insurer. The applicable statute 2 provides:

768.54 Limitation of liability and patient's compensation fund.--

....

(2) LIMITATION OF LIABILITY.--

....

(b) A health care provider shall not be liable for an amount in excess of $100,000 per claim ... for claims covered under subsection (3) [Patient's Compensation Fund] if the health care provider ... pays at least the initial $100,000 or the maximum limit of the underlying coverage maintained by the health...

To continue reading

Request your trial
4 practice notes
  • First Baptist Church of Cape Coral, Fla., Inc. v. Compass Constr., Inc., Nos. SC11–1278
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • May 30, 2013
    ...provision kept the award from violating Rowe 's prohibition against recovering an amount exceeding the fee agreement); Wilson v. Wasser, 562 So.2d 339, 340 (Fla.1990) (relying on Kaufman and Moxley to uphold an alternative fee recovery clause that included a contingency fee as the other bas......
  • Orlando Regional Medical Center, Inc. v. Chmielewski, Nos. 89-691
    • United States
    • Florida District Court of Appeals
    • December 6, 1990
    ...Patient's Compensation Fund v. Wasser, 545 So.2d 924 (Fla. 4th DCA 1989), affirmed in part, quashed in part sub nom. Wilson v. Wasser, 562 So.2d 339 (Fla.1990). The absence of those three little words is fatal to the cross-appellants' In Florida Patient's Compensation Fund v. Rowe, 472 So.2......
  • Scottsdale Ins. Co. v. Haynes, No. 5D00-111.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • June 22, 2001
    ...accordance with its plain language and entered judgment concerning the attorney's fee issue in favor of appellees. See Wilson v. Wasser, 562 So.2d 339 (Fla.1990); Florida Patient's Compensation Fund v. Bouchoc, 514 So.2d 52 (Fla.1987); Prudential Insurance Co. of America v. Lamm, 218 So.2d ......
  • SCOTTSDALE INS. v. PINECREST LTD., No. 99-1018.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • September 13, 1999
    ...accordance with its plain language and entered judgment concerning the attorney's fee issue in favor of appellees. See Wilson v. Wasser, 562 So.2d 339 (Fla.1990); Florida Patient's Compensation Fund v. Bouchoc, 514 So.2d 52 (Fla.1987); Prudential Ins. Co. of America v. Lamm, 218 So.2d 219 (......
4 cases
  • First Baptist Church of Cape Coral, Fla., Inc. v. Compass Constr., Inc., Nos. SC11–1278
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • May 30, 2013
    ...provision kept the award from violating Rowe 's prohibition against recovering an amount exceeding the fee agreement); Wilson v. Wasser, 562 So.2d 339, 340 (Fla.1990) (relying on Kaufman and Moxley to uphold an alternative fee recovery clause that included a contingency fee as the other bas......
  • Orlando Regional Medical Center, Inc. v. Chmielewski, Nos. 89-691
    • United States
    • Florida District Court of Appeals
    • December 6, 1990
    ...Patient's Compensation Fund v. Wasser, 545 So.2d 924 (Fla. 4th DCA 1989), affirmed in part, quashed in part sub nom. Wilson v. Wasser, 562 So.2d 339 (Fla.1990). The absence of those three little words is fatal to the cross-appellants' In Florida Patient's Compensation Fund v. Rowe, 472 So.2......
  • Scottsdale Ins. Co. v. Haynes, No. 5D00-111.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • June 22, 2001
    ...accordance with its plain language and entered judgment concerning the attorney's fee issue in favor of appellees. See Wilson v. Wasser, 562 So.2d 339 (Fla.1990); Florida Patient's Compensation Fund v. Bouchoc, 514 So.2d 52 (Fla.1987); Prudential Insurance Co. of America v. Lamm, 218 So.2d ......
  • SCOTTSDALE INS. v. PINECREST LTD., No. 99-1018.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • September 13, 1999
    ...accordance with its plain language and entered judgment concerning the attorney's fee issue in favor of appellees. See Wilson v. Wasser, 562 So.2d 339 (Fla.1990); Florida Patient's Compensation Fund v. Bouchoc, 514 So.2d 52 (Fla.1987); Prudential Ins. Co. of America v. Lamm, 218 So.2d 219 (......

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT